Statement by Minister Khera on Canadian Islamic History Month


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OTTAWA, October 1, 2023

Today marks the beginning of Canadian Islamic History Month, and for the very first time, we are celebrating it with the support of Amira Elghawaby, Canada’s first Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia.

Muslim communities have played a significant role in shaping the Canada we know today. In the first official census in 1871, there were about ten Muslims in the country. Today, nearly 5 percent of the Canadian population is Muslim, representing a diverse range of backgrounds and origins from every continent.

Every day, Muslim Canadians make significant contributions in various forms of art and across academic disciplines. This cultural and intellectual diversity contributes to making Canada a vibrant and inclusive country.

As we celebrate the rich history and many achievements of Muslims, we must also recognize the harmful consequences of Islamophobia and the barriers Muslims still confront today. Hate, Islamophobia, and discrimination in any form have no place in Canada, which is why our government has taken strong action in the recent years.

The appointment of Amira Elghawaby as Canada’s first Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia is an important step in our fight against Islamophobia and hatred. With her extensive knowledge and experience, Amira Elghawaby provides guidance and advice to support the Government of Canada’s efforts to combat Islamophobia in the country.

As Minister of Diversity, Inclusion and Persons with Disabilities, I stand with Special Representative Amira Elghawaby to ensure that Muslims feel safe and respected in Canada.

This Canadian Islamic History Month, let’s make the most of the activities, celebrations and conferences organized across the country to learn more about the different Muslim communities here.

Diversity is a fact, but inclusion is a choice. Together, they represent our country’s greatest strength.

I wish you a wonderful Canadian Islamic History Month!

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